West Texas A&M University

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Rock the Real
Date: 4/28/15 - 4/28/15
Time: 12:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Location: Charles K. and Barbara Kerr Vaughan Pedestrian Mall

Rock the real is an interactive demonstration of public art designed by a collective of students enrolled in Aesthetics of Gender and Identity at WTAMU with Dr. Amy Von Lintel. We invite you to wash away what weighs you down on Tuesday, April 28. Our goal is to highlight and support diversity and difference, and to empower people to have confidence in themselves and tolerance towards others.

  • STATION 1: “Come Unburden Yourself and Get a Kiss”

This station will affirm our selfhood and humanity by giving and receiving “kisses”—either a Hershey’s kiss to eat, a peck on the cheek from one of our human team members, or a slobbery kiss from one of our canine team members.


  • STATION 2: “Wash Away What Weighs You Down”

This station will let you inscribe a rock with your most heavy personal burden in a few words. We will document this personal statement through photography, cropping an image of you holding your burden-rock in your hands without showing any identifying facial features. We then invite you to add your rock into our basin of shared burdens. When that basin fills up, we will wash our burdens away together, filling the basin with water and erasing the written burdens, leaving only the clean rocks.


  • STATION 3: “Rock The Real Because Being Real Rocks”

This station will let you relieve your stress through pillow fights and puppy therapy. Each of our pillows will be inscribed with stressful concepts, allowing you to turn your stress into a fun, social, and pain-free activity.


  • STATION 4: “Burden Me No More”

This station will invite participants to run through victory banners inscribed with burdensome words, such as “intolerance,” “hatred,” and “judgment.” These banners will be stretched across the WTAMU Pedestrian Mall where they will be collectively broken by members of the campus community.  Breaking through these words of shame and bigotry will symbolize a victory for tolerance and love.


  • STATION 5: “Talk the Real”

This station will invite participants to share their experiences and perspectives about our event. We will encourage students to find their voices and express their identities through this interview. Our goal is to help students overcome some of their burdens, to let them know they are not alone, and to pay it forward in their own way.